D ay 308 November 4
9 You saw the affliction of our ancestors in Egypt
and heard their cry at the Reed Sea.
10 You performed signs and wonders against Pharaoh,
all his servants, and the people of his land.
You knew that they had acted arrogantly against our ancestors.
You made a name for yourself, a name that is famous even today.
11 You divided the sea before them so that they went through it on dry land.
But you cast their pursuers into the depths,
as a stone into the mighty waters.
12 With a pillar of cloud you led them by day
and with a column of lightning by night;
they lit the way in which the people should go.
13 You came down upon Mount Sinai and spoke with them from heaven.
You gave them proper judgments and true Instruction,
good statutes and commandments.
14 You made known to them your holy Sabbath,
and gave them commandments, statutes, and Instruction through your servant Moses.
15 When they were hungry, you gave them bread from heaven;
when they were thirsty, you brought water out of the rock for them.
You told them to go in to possess the land that you had sworn to give them.
16 But our ancestors acted arrogantly.
They were stubborn and wouldn’t obey your commandments.
17 They refused to obey,
and didn’t remember the wonders that you accomplished in their midst.
They acted arrogantly and decided to return to their slavery in Egypt.
But you are a God ready to forgive, merciful and compassionate,
very patient, and truly faithful.
You didn’t forsake them.
18 Even when they had cast an image of a calf for themselves,
saying, “This is your God who brought you up out of Egypt,”
and holding you in great contempt,
19 you, in your great mercy, didn’t abandon them in the wilderness.
The column of cloud continued to guide them on their journey during the day,
and the column of lightning lit their path during the night.
20 You gave your good spirit to teach them.
You didn’t withhold your manna from them,
and you gave them water for their thirst.
21 You kept them alive for forty years—
they lacked nothing in the wilderness!
Their clothes didn’t wear out,
and their feet didn’t swell.
26-31 As they led him off, they made Simon, a man from Cyrene who happened to be coming in from the countryside, carry the cross behind Jesus. A huge crowd of people followed, along with women weeping and carrying on. At one point Jesus turned to the women and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, don’t cry for me. Cry for yourselves and for your children. The time is coming when they’ll say, ‘Lucky the women who never conceived! Lucky the wombs that never gave birth! Lucky the breasts that never gave milk!’ Then they’ll start calling to the mountains, ‘Fall down on us!’ calling to the hills, ‘Cover us up!’ If people do these things to a live, green tree, can you imagine what they’ll do with deadwood?”
32 Two others, both criminals, were taken along with him for execution.
33 When they got to the place called Skull Hill, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right, the other on his left.
34-35 Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.”
Dividing up his clothes, they threw dice for them. The people stood there staring at Jesus, and the ringleaders made faces, taunting, “He saved others. Let’s see him save himself! The Messiah of God—ha! The Chosen—ha!”
36-37 The soldiers also came up and poked fun at him, making a game of it. They toasted him with sour wine: “So you’re King of the Jews! Save yourself!” 38 Printed over him was a sign: this is the king of the jews.
39 One of the criminals hanging alongside cursed him: “Some Messiah you are! Save yourself! Save us!” 40-41 But the other one made him shut up: “Have you no fear of God? You’re getting the same as him. We deserve this, but not him—he did nothing to deserve this.” 42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom.” 43 He said, “Don’t worry, I will. Today you will join me in paradise.”
Comment: “Don’t worry,” our Lord says, “I will remember you!” Amen!!
32 What more can I say? I would run out of time if I told you about Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. 33 Through faith they conquered kingdoms, brought about justice, realized promises, shut the mouths of lions, 34 put out raging fires, escaped from the edge of the sword, found strength in weakness, were mighty in war, and routed foreign armies. 35 Women received back their dead by resurrection. Others were tortured and refused to be released so they could gain a better resurrection.
36 But others experienced public shame by being taunted and whipped; they were even put in chains and in prison. 37 They were stoned to death, they were cut in two, and they died by being murdered with swords. They went around wearing the skins of sheep and goats, needy, oppressed, and mistreated. 38 The world didn’t deserve them. They wandered around in deserts, mountains, caves, and holes in the ground.
39 All these people didn’t receive what was promised, though they were given approval for their faith. 40 God provided something better for us so they wouldn’t be made perfect without us.
Prayer: Lord, show me your glory, I pray. Amen.